Council leader resists calls to stand down during police probe

Councillor Heather McVey
Councillor Heather McVey

A bid to get North Lanarkshire Council leader Jim Logue to stand down while a police probe into his activities takes place has been thrown out.

The authority’s SNP group demanded the move after an investigation began into Councillor Logue’s dealings as chairman of NL Leisure, the trust which runs sports facilities on behalf of the council.

He was criticised in an internal audit after he failed to register his directorship of two companies set up without the knowledge of the NL board.

A motion before a special council meeting demanded Councillor Logue step aside “until the police have concluded whether there is evidence of criminality”.

However, Labour and Conservative councillors joined forces to defeat the call 40-33.

SNP business manager Councillor Allan Stubbs said the council’s reputation “already lies in tatters” while his colleague Councilllor Claire Barclay, of Cumbernauld East, added: “I’m sick and tired of our reputation being dragged through the mire.

“We were elected to bring hope to North Lanarkshire and make things more transparent, but we have fallen at the first hurdle.”

However, Labour accused the Nationalists of wasting valuable time by trying to smear Councillor Logue who insisted the legal advice he received was he didn’t have to register the directorships.

Kilsyth councillor Heather McVey, the Labour group business manager, said: “This is taking us away from the day job. Jim Logue is dynamic, resilient and committed to making the lives of the people of North Lanarkshire better.”